125,447 kindergarten enrollees concern DepEd

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Friday, June 1, 2012


PALO, Leyte – Accommodating the projected 125,447 kindergarten enrollees in Eastern Visayas on Monday’s schools opening will be a top concern of the Department of Education (DepEd), with new learners needing more than 8,000 classrooms.

Rebecca Ragrag, chief of the DepEd regional planning and policy division, said a single classroom should only house 15 kindergarten learners, a standard that might not be followed due shortage of classrooms in the region.

“With the recommended kindergarten class size, we can already imagine the need for more classrooms. Our main concern now is to enroll all five years old to kindergarten. We will see other problems if the class is in full swing,” Ragrag said.

During the early registration in January 2012, at least 82,455 five-year-old children in the region enrolled in various schools.

On Monday, DepEd projects that 125,447 kindergarten learners will troop to elementary schools, with 33,682 of them in Biliran; 30,271 in Leyte; 6,192 in Southern Leyte; 9,195 in Eastern Samar; 16,190 in Northern Samar; 16,732 in Samar; 5,209 in Calbayog City; 4,412 in Ormoc City; 2,525 in Tacloban City; and 1,399 in Maasin City.

The region also needs thousands of specially trained teachers to educate five-year-old learners in the region. The 2012 budget only allows the DepEd to hire 207 kindergarten teachers for the 2012-2013 academic year.

Kindergarten education was institutionalized as part of basic education and was implemented partially last school year. It was made mandatory and compulsory for entrance to Grade 1 this year under the K-12 program of the DepEd.

The general kindergarten program is the 10-month program provided to children who are at least five years old in elementary schools using thematic and integrative curriculum to ensure the development of foundation skills among children to prepare them for Grade 1. (Leyte Samar Daily Express)

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